FRANCE’S FAIREST EXPORT– FRANCOISE HARDY | IMMORTAL BELOVED STYLE & MUSIC MUSE

francoise hardy grand prix helmet

Francoise Hardy on the ‘Grand Prix’ film set seen wearing co-star James Garner’s helmet, 1966.

Francoise Hardy was a wistful breath of fresh air during the sex, drugs & rock ‘n’ roll of the 1960s. Mysterious, sweetly naive, and utterly desirable. She was adored by Bob Dylan, Nick Drake, Mick Jagger, David Bowie, and more. The incredible enduring images of Hardy, particularly those by famed photographer Jean-Marie Perier (who shot her donned in Dior, Yves Saint Laurent, Andre Courréges, and Paco Rabanne), made her an instant and timeless style icon. With her faraway gaze and lazy smile, Francoise Hardy is like a melancholy dream that you simply don’t want to wake up from. Her unease with fame and adoration is at times clearly evident in her photos– serving only to make her even more alluring.

Francoise Hardy on the ‘Grand Prix’ film set

Francoise Hardy resting in a Formula One race car during the filming of Grand Prix, 1966.

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Francoise Hardy Playing In The Film 'Grand Prix'

Francoise Hardy sitting on a Formula One race car during the filming of Grand Prix, 1966. –Photo by Francois Gragnon

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francoise hardy honda motorcycle

Francoise Hardy perched atop a Honda motorcycle is an all-time internet #babesonbikes favorite.

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NEALE BAYLY RIDES | CHECK IT OUT ON SPEED NETWORK JUNE 9TH, 9PM EST

I had the pleasure of finally meeting Neale Bayly a couple weeks ago in Brooklyn through mutual friends and got to hear firsthand about his very cool new show Neale Bayly Rides (that he’s been busting his ass on for quite some time…), and now all Neale’s blood, sweat, and tears is about to finally payoff when the show debuts on Fox Sports’ Speed Network on June 9th, 9PM EST.

This isn’t just a show about tearing across the planet on a BMW– which would be cool enough for me to watch all day long. Neale has a real humanitarian heart, and the causes he believes in are truly the end game for him. The tagline for the show sums it up well– Adventure. Travel. Adrenaline, Storytelling. All on motorcycles. (BMW’s, at that.) 

“Neale Bayly, renowned motorcycle journalist and philanthropic adventure rider, takes three average riders on the trip of a lifetime to Peru. They face unbelievable challenges through the deserts and mountains…but find it’s all worth it when their journey leads them to an orphanage…”

neale bayly rides peru speed show

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TALES OF SALVADOR DALI’S DEMON BRIDE | FOR LUST OF MONEY AND MEN

Funny how often we automatically assume that long-standing, famous couples must be deeply devoted, madly in love, and happier than a couple of pigs in slop. Sometimes, like in the case of Salavador Dali and his wife Gala– what looked like love may have been a case of shared sins and “the devil you know”… I found this juicy tell-all on the couple written for VF some 15 years ago that made my own mustache curl on end… I even had to omit a few bits that were just too much. Let’s just say, it seems that they deserved each other– neither of them seem exactly easy, let alone pleasurable, to be with.

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salvador dali gala

ca. 1930– Salvador Dali and Gala in Port Lligat, a fishing village near Cadaques, before they married. When they met in 1929 Gala was still married to the poet Paul Eluard, and she quickly began an affair with Dali, who was around ten years her junior. After marrying Dali, she and Eluard continued their intimate relationship. “Letters to Gala”  is the published collection of Eluard’s raw, twisted, and emotional letters to Gala that expose the powerful grip she held on him.

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DALI’S DEMON BRIDE

When Surrealist master Salvador Dali met Gala Devulina in 1929, the 25-year-old artist found a poisonous muse who defined decadence and outdid him in sexual perversity.

By John Richardson, Vanity Fair, 1998

That Salvador Dali fell victim to his Russian wife Gala’s lust for domination is no longer a matter of conjecture. Ian Gibson, in an eye-opening biography of the artist that Norton will publish here this month, comes up with some terrifying new facts, which reveal in more detail and depth than ever before how and why this quintessential Surrealist—the master of the soft watches—allowed himself to be destroyed by one of the nastiest wives a major modern artist ever saddled himself with.

I can testify to the accuracy of Gibson’s account. In the early 1970s I was a vice president of M. Knoedler & Co., Dali’s dealers. One of my responsibilities was keeping the artist to the terms of his contract at a time when his eye was so bleary and his hand so shaky that assistants had taken over his more arduous work. I could not help feeling sorry for the seedy old conjurer, with his rhinoceros-horn wand, leopardskin overcoat, and designer whiskers, not to mention his surreal breath. The Wizard of Was, as someone called him, was all patter and very little sleight of hand. His virago of a wife and the creepy, conniving courtiers in charge of his business had reduced Dali to a mere logo, a signature as flamboyant as his mustache.

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gala salvador dali

ca. 1930– Salvador Dali and Gala in Port Lligat, a fishing village near Cadaques, before they married. Dali was reportedly a virgin when they met, who feared female private parts, and in a very close relationship with the poet Federico Garcia Lorca. There are differing opinions on whether it was a gay love affair– some say it was, while others claim Dali rebuffed Lorca’s sexual advances. Reports are also that what Dali really got off on was candaulism.

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WILD AT HEART– VOGUE 1991 | THE EPIC PHOTOGRAPHY OF PETER LINDBERGH

In 1991, photographer Peter Lindbergh shot the elite eight of the world’s sexiest Supermodels in Brooklyn, NY for the September 1991 issue of American Vogue– Cindy Crawford, Tatjana Patitz, Helena Christensen, Linda Evangelista, Claudia Schiffer, Naomi Campbell, Karen Mulder, and Stephanie Seymour. The shoot titled “Wild at Heart” was styled by Grace Coddington, featuring looks that were a hi-lo mix of Chanel meets Schott– and we in the fashion world have never been the same since. This iconic editorial spread continues to inspire and awe to this day– over 20 years+ later. The Brit bikes featured throughout really make this work– several Triumphs, and I think I even spied a BSA in there as well!

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The 1990s was the decade of the Supermodel– Cindy Crawford, Tatjana Patitz, Helena Christensen, Linda Evangelista, Claudia Schiffer, Naomi Campbell, Karen Mulder, and Stephanie Seymour. This shot was titled “The Wild Ones” with the original selling at auction a few years ago for close to $35,000 –Image by © Peter Lindbergh

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Supermodel Helena Christensen channeling “The Wild One” and striking a very Marlon Brando-esque pose in her Erez leather jacket and Harley-Davidson leather biker cap –Image by © Peter Lindbergh

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Marlon Brando as Johnny in the Iconic motorcycle film “The Wild One” which simultaneously thrust biking forward into the limelight in terms of popularity and style, while setting it back in terms of stereotypes and the court of public opinion. Marlon Brando rode his own 1950 Thunderbird in the film– a big boost for Triumph motorcycles. You can read more about that here.

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LONG LIVE THE KINGS | AN ORIGINAL FILM FEATURING BLITZ MOTORCYCLES

Yep. I’m late to the game on this one – but this film is so beautiful and positive that I have to get it out to any of you who may not have had the pleasure of seeing it yet.

“Long Live The Kings” is an original short documentary by Frenchmen Clement Beauvais and Arthur de Kersauson featuring a bevy of beautiful old Beemers courtesy of Blitz Motorcycles. It’s shot on super 16mm film, and is about “relating the hopes and desires of those who go for a motorcycle road trip.” It’s a feel-good flick that’s very well-edited and super-easy on the eyes with breath-taking scenery and badass bikes. Edwin Denim supported the making of this film, and good for them for not jamming product down our throat, and allowing the film to remain pure. Enjoy.

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LONG LIVE THE KINGS’ BLOG

BLITZ MOTORCYCLES

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HAMMARHEAD x DUNDERDON NYC | WEEK #2 — PRODUCT COLLABORATION

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Tonight 5/24 is Round 2 of the Hammarhead x Dunderdon collaboration event — the second in a 3 week series of Thursday nights at the Dunderdon SoHo shop. James will be working away on the 2008 Triumph Bonneville that is being morphed before our eyes into an original Hammarhead Industries creation live at Dunderdon. In addition to the bike, there is the incredible product collaboration with one of a kind pieces– my favorite being this amazing deerskin welding jacket that James and Dunderdon designed based on an old relic of a photo. They were taken by the clean, honest construction and simple lines of the piece and how functional and timeless it was, not just for welding and grinding and such– but also for a blast around the block on your bike. What I like is that all the pieces of the collection is that they clearly have utility in mind, are no nonsense in design, yet the materials and trim are extremely durable and over-engineered, reminding me of the Hammarhead Industries bikes themselves.

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GL1(HHI) Work Glove (as seen worn by James Hammarhead above)
• hand sewn domestic deerskin
• seamless die cut palm
• outseam construction
• made in USA

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J77(HHI) Welder’s Jacket

• classic welding jacket optimized for welding, grinding and the fast test ride
• high collar and adjustable cuff
• waxed for weather protection (Otter Wax)
• 1.3 mm suede from cow split leather
• Kevlar thread on all seams
• rivets at seam endings and pocket corners
• snap buttons for easy use
• two zipped chest pockets; one large internal pocket
• made in Sweden
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SCOTT POMMIER x MOTO GUZZI | 2012 MOTORCYCLE AD CAMPAIGN SHOOT

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“Shooting the motorcycle stuff really changed the way that I saw what I did as a photographer.”  

–Scott Pommier

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Friend Scott Pommier recently shot Motto Guzzi motorcycle’s 2012 ad campaign — and it looks amazing. The usually stoic Canadian gets a little sappy in this behind the scenes video — talking about his early days shooting skateboard stuff for Thrasher Magazine (Scott’s a helluva skateboarder, btw.) and how getting busted on a shoot by the cops who impounded all his equipment and car for a month (LA’s finest) led to him getting a motorcycle and his passion for bikes and riding. I love it — check it out. And the photography? Well, it’s classic Scott Pommier. Spot-on as always.

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Backstage film shot and edited by Stefano Righi

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Scott Pommier photography for Moto Guzzi Motorcycle’s 2012 ad campaign, Art Director Luca Eremo

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Scott Pommier photography for Moto Guzzi Motorcycle’s 2012 ad campaign, Art Director Luca Eremo

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HAMMARHEAD x DUNDERDON NYC | BE THERE THE NEXT 3 THURSDAYS IN MAY

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The Hammarhead x Dunderdon collaboration events start tonight, I’m checking it out. Hope to see you there. It’ll be cool to see the bike build unfold over the next 3 Thursdays. Spirits provided by our friends at Art In The Age and beer by Sixpoint Brewery. 

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WHAT:  Over the span of 3 weeks in May, Hammarhead Industries will design and fabricate a custom motorcycle at Dunderdon NYC.

WHEN:  6-9PM, Thursdays – May 17, 24, 31

WHERE:  DUNDERON 25 Howard Street, New York, NY 10013

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THE PLAYBOY CLUB BUNNY MANUAL | TSY REQUIRED RETRO READING

The iconic Playboy Bunny is a symbol of the fabulous swinging era of the ’60s & ’70s that Hugh Hefner honed to a razor sharp point in the form of a fuzzy cotton tail that adorned the hostess Bunnies in his famous (or infamous) Playboy clubs that cropped-up around the world. From the pages of the Ex Playboy Bunnies Website (with its trove of photos, btw) is an official hand-typed “The Playboy Club Bunny Manual” which strictly dictates the duties, demeanor, and personal presentation expected of Playboy Bunnies at all times. They were not messing around– this was a buttoned-up operation (on paper at least) that was focused on keeping the Playboy mystique and allure alive– and the Playboy Bunnies were definitely the faces and tails of the Playboy brand.

Keith Richards (background, upper right…) and the Rolling Stones paying a visit to the Playboy Club.

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The original Playboy Bunnies proudly showing their most precious and proudest asset– their iconic bunny tail. The bunnies had to keep their tails cleaned, brushed,  perfumed, and impeccable at all times.

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BREAD & BUTTER BERLIN 2012 INSPIRATION VIDEOS

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Dustin Schöne is a filmmaker in Germany who sent me this short video he shot for the fashion tradeshow for cool brands– Bread & Butter Berlin. There’s a quick little shout-out from a young designer who named The Selvedge Yard as one of his favorite sites to look to for inspiration. Thank you, sir. If anyone can put a name to the face, I’d love to send him a personal thank you note.

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